Carter set for return
All Blacks fly-half Dan Carter is "available for selection" and could feature off the Crusaders bench in Saturday's clash with the Hurricanes in Wellington.
Carter had played 120 minutes for Southbridge in two rural club games, scoring 14 points on Saturday, on his return from an eight-month sabbatical.
The 100-Test All Black is set to be considered as option amongst the replacements for the New Zealand conference leaders in crucial clash at the Cake Tin.
''I'm available for selection so I will leave that up to the coaches to decide,'' said Carter.
''I am excited and keen to be part of it.''
All Blacks squad member Colin Slade is expected to retain the number 10 jersey with Carter able to slot in at inside centre if he is involved.
Crusaders assistant coach Tabai Matson described Carter's return to Crusaders training a fortnight ago as ''modified'' as he eases back into action.
''It's great to have him back and available to play, that is probably the key thing,'' Matson said.
''Sladie is playing really well and that is probably the talking point. What do we do with our last Crusaders' performance - the team was really settled and playing well.''
Meanwhile, the Crusader will be without Fijian wing Nemani Nadolo, who is still on international duty.
Full-back Israel Dagg may also be rested from the Hurricanes match.